SKF and Cambridge University set up Steel Technology Centre

2009 May 25, 09:12 CET

SKF has signed a five year contract with Cambridge University Department of Materials Science and Metallurgy to set up the SKF University Technology Centre on Steels on campus in Cambridge.

The initial contract is for five years and will pioneer research, directed by SKF, on steels and heat treatment associated with advanced bearing technology.

Dr. Alan Begg; SKF Senior Vice President of Group Technology comments “I am delighted to be partnering with Cambridge University in this critical strategic area for us. They are universally renowned for their expertise in the physical metallurgy* of steels. And they attract top people who will underpin our in-house activities on steel and heat treatment, which remain absolutely key technologies for SKF”.

The objective of the cooperation will be to rapidly advance SKF’s knowledge of the physical metallurgy* of bearing steels leading to a range of new and improved products.

SKF will identify and select a number of steel technology R&D topics for Cambridge University to work on that will lead to a better understanding of;

1.    how to manage the detailed microstructure and exploit this knowledge to enhance bearing properties
2.    how modifications to steel composition can enable complex operational demands to be mitigated
3.    how to predict the performance relative to the steel and heat treatment selection.

Leading the team at Cambridge will be Professor Harry Bhadeshia a recognized world expert in physical metallurgy of steels and whose previous work has resulted in a number of novel steel compositions.

Dr. Alan Begg says: “I have known Harry Bhadeshia for a long time and greatly admire his work. It is excellent to get the opportunity to work alongside him in this programme”

Cambridge University sees the cooperation as an excellent opportunity to offer their researchers challenging, long term, projects that will develop and transfer technology from the laboratories to industrial products and applications in a way that is rewarding for themselves, SKF and the industrial world.

*physical metallurgy, in this context, is the relationship of microstructure to mechanical and physical properties developed by specific steel compositions and heat treatments

Göteborg, 25 May 2009

Aktiebolaget SKF

For further information, please contact:
PRESS: Ingalill Östman, SKF Group Communication, tel: +46 31-337 3260, mobile: +46 706-973260, e-mail:

IR: Marita Björk, SKF Investor Relations, tel: +46 31-337 1994, mobile: +46 705-181994, e-mail:

Technical Press: Colin Roberts, SKF Group Technical Press, tel: +31 30 607 56 08, mobile: +31 65 394 41 11, e-mail:


SKF is a leading global supplier in the areas of bearings, seals, mechatronics, services and lubrication systems. The Group’s service offer includes technical support, maintenance services, engineering consultancy and training. SKF is represented in more than 130 countries and has 15,000 distributor locations worldwide. The Group’s annual sales 2008 were SEK 63,361 million. The number of employees was 44,799.

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